Against the winter’s heav’n of white the blood
Of earth runs very quick and hot to-day;
A storm of fiery leaves are out at play
Around the lingering sunset of the wood.
Where rows of blackberries unnoticed stood,
Run streams of ruddy color wildly gay;
The golden lane half dreaming picks its way
Through ’whelming vines, as through a gleaming flood.
O warm, outspoken earth, a little space
Against thy beating heart my heart shall beat,
A little while they twain shall bleed and burn,
And then the cold touch and the gray, gray face,
The frozen pulse, the drifted winding-sheet,
And speechlessness, and the chill burial urn.
Ethelwyn Wetherald (1857-1940)
from The House of the Trees, and other poems, 1895
[Poem is in the public domain in Canada, the United States, and the European Union]
Ethelwyn Wetherald biography